HAMPTON — This summer, 15 students from across the region have had the opportunity to participate in a new pilot program at Doe River Gorge Ministries called “Bull’s Eye.”
The 14-day program focuses on spiritual development as well as riflery, archery and some of the high adventure components from the popular summer Adventure Quest program.
“This program is designed to give boys in fifth-seventh grade the ultimate adventure experience, while building skills, confidence and character that will last a lifetime,” said Terry Maughon, president of Doe River Gorge.
“It’s really fun because we have activities and Bible study times,” said Benjamin Leonard, a Bull’s Eye participant from Johnson City. “I grew a lot. I know more about Christ Jesus than ever before. If you ever get a chance, you should come here.”
Shannon Deloach, an activities director and instructor of the Bull’s Eye program, described it as more than another fun activity, but a way of introducing students to life-changing biblical truths and a possible lifelong sport. She says archery and riflery programs are known to develop character, self-worth, focus and discipline. Students are required to learn each type of rifle, as well as its parts, safety and the various shooting positions.
Another Bull’s Eye instructor, David Legge, and Deloach were both able to receive the necessary training to lead the program because of a partnership with Alpha Natural Resources. They obtained certifications as National Rifle Association Instructors, NRA Chief Range Safety Officers and as a USA Archery Level 2 Intermediate Coach.
Because of these certifications, students completing the Bull’s Eye program achieved certificates for their accomplishments from the Jr. Olympic Archery Xperience Program, USA Archery and the NRA. Students completing the program have the opportunity to continue advancing in their marksmanship levels.
“Learning how to shoot was my favorite,” said Bristol resident Connor Childers.
Other first-year programs in 2011 have included an equestrian program for girls called “Manes N’ Tails,” and a wakeboarding program on Watauga Lake called “Splash.” For more information about Doe River Gorge, visit www.doerivergorge.com or call 725.4010.